Thursday, August 14, 2014

Adventures in Educationland: Can't. Breathe.

The other night I had a dream where Miss Banana and I were walking in the shallow part of a lake. She was holding my hand as we enjoyed the water lapping at our legs. All of the sudden, we slipped under the water and it was as if we were riding a slide down into the lake.

At first it was fun--the water whooshing past, sunlight filtering through the warm water, smiles and giggles from my girl.

But we kept sliding and sliding--rushing deeper and deeper into the lake. The temperature plummeted. The water became dark and oppressive. Panic overwhelmed us both as we were deposited on the bottom of the lake with an unceremonious thud.

Can't. Breathe.

I grabbed my girl and frantically started pushing to the surface. The tears from both of us were lost in the surrounding water. I kicked and swam and reached and fought hard to get us to the surface.

And just as the water was starting to get warmer and light was shining through, I woke up.

I didn't get to find out if we made it to the surface or not.

Back in reality, I was shivering and panicky. Earlier that evening, I had been talking to Dr. C about Miss B starting fully included Kindergarten in a few days and how I feel as if we are throwing her into the deep end and hoping she'll swim.

I am sure my dream was a reflection of those worries.

Miss B is cute and funny and smart and happy. But Miss B is also largely non-verbal, will run to the next state if given the smallest opportunity, and struggles to stay on task.

What will Kindergarten be like for her?

Can't. Breathe.

Will she make friends? Will her teacher and aide "get" her? Are we sacrificing academics for inclusion? Am I expecting too much from her? Am I expecting too little? Will she tell someone when she needs to go potty? Will she steal food from the other kids when their food looks more appetizing than hers? Will she be a full member of the classroom? Will she be seen as the baby? Will she get sick more often? Will she work when she's supposed to work? Will she be too tired? Will she follow the rules? Will she answer questions? Will other kids take the time to try to learn what she is trying to say?

Will she be happy?

Can't. Breathe.

It begins MONDAY.

Can't. Breathe.


Addie Talley, Photographer said...

I have so been there... its a scary place. To be honest, it mostly hinges on the teacher - we had one year in full inclusion kindergarten where Wallace's teacher wanted him there and he grew so much with her, so much more than we could have done with him... and then the next year, he got moved to another kindergarten class and the teachers didn't want him and he regressed so much.

So if you've met with his teacher, and you think they are a good fit, then I think you will be ok... but if you don't have a good feeling, don't be afraid to speak up (we wasted a lot of time not wanting to rock the boat, and it was harder the longer we let it go on)

I promise this isn't too scare you, just wanted to be honest as someone who has been there... I think Miss B will do amazing really! I just want to encourage you to really get to know her teachers... :)

Cant wait to hear how it goes!

Cindy said...

Oh I'm so sorry you're feeling this way! I wish I could tell you that she will be the most popular girl in class and always obey the teacher and never get into trouble... but we both know that doesn't happen for ANYONE. But I will say, she WILL make friends; she might not tell someone when she has to go potty but they will take care of it; she might steal food from the other kids and they will steal hers, she will probably come home exhausted the first few weeks but she'll adjust... and so will you. Such a scary time I know, but it will be okay. Promise.

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